REVIEW – Les Ballets Trockadero De Monte Carlo, Edinburgh Festival Theatre

*****

As the curtain rises, the familiar setting of Swan Lake unfolds; Prince Siegfried dances with his princess-turned-swan lover … who has chest hair?!

The Trockadero is an all-male cast of professional ballet danseurs playing both male and female characters from famous ballets. Their embodiment of the characters is complete with tights, tutus, pointe shoes and humorous Russian ballerina names like “Katerina Bychkova”.

It’s the perfect burlesque of ballet, as the tongue-in-cheek humour will keep even the most ardent balletophobes entertained. Don’t be fooled, however – the dancers’ incredible technique and artistry does justice to the ballets they seek to parody. Men dancing ‘en pointe’ doing spins, jumps and lifting other men (some as tall as 6ft 4inches) is hardly the same as partnering a 5ft 4inch tall ballerina weighing as little as 50 kilograms.

The show gives a good range of ballet repertoire to suit various ballet tastes. From the classic Swan Lake to Balanchine’s neo-classical Concerto Barocco; a technically daunting ‘pas de deux’ (partner dance) Gran Pas Classique; the Dying Swan solo that screams, “Eat your heart out, Pavolva!” and a bit of ethnic flair from the ballet Raymonda’s Wedding to end the show.

The ‘Trock’ is a joy for balletomanes as well as for those less keen on the ballet – you’ll never think of Swan Lake the same way ever again!

Review by Ingrida Dornbrook

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